‘You Should Have Expected U.S.’: Series of Attacks Hit Midwest Ahead of Massive Electric Grid Drill
Thursday, October 10, 2013
The FBI is offering a $25,000 reward after the third in a series of power grid attacks in Arkansas left 10,000 residents without power over the weekend.
The attacks began back in September:
In the early morning hours of September 29, 2013, officials with Entergy Arkansas reported a fire at its Keo substation located on Arkansas Highway 165 between Scott and England in Lonoke County. Fortunately, there were no injuries and no reported power outages. Investigation has determined that the fire, which consumed the control house at the substation, was intentionally set. The person or persons responsible for this incident inscribed a message on a metal control panel outside the substation which reads, ‘YOU SHOULD HAVE EXPECTED U.S.’ (source)
These attacks are especially troubling considering their timing ahead of a massive joint power grid drill scheduled for next month to include the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
The GridEx II grid security exercise set for November 13-14 will involve FBI antiterrorism units, National Guard, thousands of utility workers and business executives, as well as government officials from all three nations to simulate widespread grid takedown scenarios.
More troubling is a sudden talking point shift to the vulnerability of the U.S. power grid by multiple government officials, including outgoing Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, who recently issued an ‘open letter’ to her successor warning that a cyber or physical event that takes out the power grid will occur — stating that it is not a question of “if” but “when”.